How unfair trade has ruined economy!
Television’s historic moments include: America’s landing on the moon, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the tearing down of the Berlin Wall and for some, various Super Bowl touchdowns, and for others, multi-millionaires accepting honors from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS).
An interview in 1994 of Sir James Goldsmith by recently humiliated PBS legend Charlie Rose is never on the list of great TV moments, but it should be.
Rose – longtime darling of the Trilateral Commission (TC) and the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) – was ecstatic with the Bill Clinton administration and the globalism the President promoted with NAFTA and other trade treaties.
Goldsmith was one of the world’s richest men. He believed that America would lose its middle class when manufacturing moved overseas, and he argued that so-called free trade would eventually reduce America to a third world country.
In the video above from 25 years ago, the usually cordial Rose grows angrier as the interview continues, and when Goldsmith overwhelms him with facts, Rose adds Laura Tyson, Clinton’s economic whiz, in an attempt to shout down Goldsmith.
There are amazing predictions of job loses, and Goldsmith muses that American workers will be competing with four billion workers around the world, most earning about 2% of our average wage. He also predicted the world will be involved in mass migration from poor to rich countries, as they search for better wages.
While Rose and Tyson argued in the video that American factories will only open in foreign lands to produce for foreign consumption, Goldsmith explains that the factories will produce overseas at dirt wages and import these goods here.
That was before virtually all production of appliances, electronics and clothing moved overseas, and Made in China was this nation’s most favored label.
Rose and Tyson scoffed at the suggestion that auto production would move to Mexico.
The United States now imports 4 million vehicles a year from Mexican plants. We produced 3.1 million cars in America in 2017, and China manufactured 24.8 million cars the same year – up from just 7 million in 2008.
Goldsmith said that when faced with the choice of cheap foreign labor, corporations would see no viable choice, and the American worker would lose bargaining power. Who needs to pay for American labor, plus vacations, FICA, health insurance, overtime, when the minimum wage is 59 cents an hour in Mexico, and a fraction of even that in China?
Goldsmith predicted that we would lose jobs with trade treaties like the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). Later events proved him right. America removed tariffs and quotas, but other nations have continued usual business practices, blocking our imports, while we allow free access to U.S. markets.
The above is a long video – some 56 minutes. It can be watched in snatches, and you are excused for yelling at the screen when Laura and Charlie try to talk over Goldsmith.
Rose, 76, is no longer on TV. Most of his awards have been withdrawn after 37 women accused him of abusive behavior and sexual harassment.
His downfall began in November, 2017, when eight women, who were employees or wanted to work for Rose, accused the news emperor of contriving to be naked in their presence, groping them, and making lewd phone calls.
Tyson is currently a member of the Board of Trustees at UC Berkeley’s Blum Center for Developing Economies. She has published a number of books and articles on industrial competitiveness, trade, and also on the economies of Central Europe.
Goldsmith was a critic of the mass media. After he started the Referendum Party in 1994 to withdraw from the European Union, he mailed a VHS video cassette film to some five million homes in Great Britain “to allow him to address the electorate free from the editorial control of the nation’s mainstream media.”
Goldsmith died in July, 1997, and is probably best known as the man who retired from his financial empire and liquidated his assets, when he correctly predicted the Black Monday stock market crash in 1987.